Last week, Kimberly Jones turned to Facebook after she said her daughter was “embarrassed” and “harassed” at a Kansas middle school. But what did young Bella do to deserve the alleged ridicule of her peers, her teachers, and other school officials? Well, according to Jones's Facebook post, the 11-year-old wore a tunic and leggings, and the length of said tunic — coupled with leggings — violated the school’s dress code policy. Romper reached out to Lansing Middle School for comment but, at the time of publication, no response had been received.
In the now viral post, Jones explained what she believes happened: Bella was sent to the nurse’s office by a “school official” at Lansing Middle School for a dress code violation. Once there, the nurse measured the young girl’s tunic. After deciding Bella’s shirt was too short, the nurse gave Bella a pair of gray sweatpants and informed her she would have to wear the pants over her leggings, according to Jones.
And while, to some, this scenario may not appear “embarrassing,” in an interview with TODAY, Jones explained how damaging the experience had been to her daughter:
According to TODAY, Lansing superintendent Darrel Stufflebeam admitted in an email that the dress code policy was not clear enough:
And shortly after the incident occurred, the dress code was changed to reflect the leggings ban: leggings are "not considered suitable school wear.”
As for the Joneses, the pair is working to fight LMS's dress code. Bella and one of her friends have created a petition, and, as Bella explained to TODAY, they are hoping they can make a difference: "People are saying that I wasn't telling the truth and that I knew this was a rule — well, it was also once a rule in this country that women couldn't vote! That doesn't mean we give up on a good fight."